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Gina
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My husband and I will be married for 10 years in 2016, when we got engaged we (I) decided to purchase just the setting (a round 3 stone with pave diamonds, see image)  at that time with the plan to upgrade the CZ center stone for our 10 year anniversary. Which we have been saving for, but with our 4th kid coming soon saving money is a slow process.

Currently there is a 1carat CZ in the center of my ring. We are undecided if we will

a. purchase a new diamond for my current ring, (if I keep my ring I would like to get a stone larger than a 1carat, and possibly change the shape of the center stone) or

b. purchase a new ring and use the 2 side stone in my current ring to make stud earnings.

 

I'm looking to get the most (largest carat) for the least amount of money, wether that be an estate piece, ebay or a diamond that maybe valued at a "lower quality" but still looks good with out a super magnifying glass. I just have no idea where to start.

 

The jeweler we purchased the ring from said my ring can hold a larger stone & any cut, however we've moved and some of the local places have told me that I need to keep the size stone that is in there (or close to it) and that it "might" be possible to change shape.

 

I don't really know much so any suggestions would be appreciated, including websites to purchase loose stones, or vintage preowned rings. Also how to get the most for my money.  Also how much should I look to have saved if I want to get a center stone thats around 1.2 - 1.5 carats? What is the difference visually in the carat increments? I would like for the center stone to "look" bigger than the 1c is there, if I decide to keep the setting I have. I'm sure that I'll have other questions as I learn more.

post-134842-0-27296200-1423280959_thumb.jpeg

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It's a little hard to tell from the picture how the ring is put together but it looks pretty likely that you can put anything in there you want, as long as it fits between the two side stones.  Even those could probably be moved and that would free you up to anything at all.  What they'll do is change the prongs out to accommodate the new size/shape.  Are you talking to someone who actually does this sort of work or a salesperson in the store when they say that it 'might' be possible?

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Hi Gina, welcome to DiamondReview - and congratulations for your forthcoming 10 anniversary!

 

The questions you are asking are complex, and to an extent there is no "right" answer to some of them - partly because opinions are like noses, and partly because at the end of the day the only right answer is the one you like. Anyway, since I have a nose too, here is my opinion...

 

I'm looking to get the most (largest carat) for the least amount of money, wether that be an estate piece, ebay or a diamond that maybe valued at a "lower quality" but still looks good with out a super magnifying glass. I just have no idea where to start.

I'd start by going out to a couple of local jewellers and looking... normally it's free, and it's always very instructive.

 

Ask them to show you ONLY GIA, AGS or HRD-graded stones; this is important because not everybody grades diamonds using the same (or even internally consistent) standards, and what you are trying to do at this stage is to get an impression of what you may or may not like/want. Having to contend with different standards of what does an "H" colour look like is not helpful, particularly at this stage.

 

"Lower quality" is to a large extent perception and personal preference: a warm white (or faint yellow, whichever way you look at it) will cost a fair bit less than a pure, icy white, but it's not necessarily less beautiful. In my opinion, clarity over SI1/VS2 (i.e. VS1+) is pointless, but there are people who tolerate significantly more inclusions than that - even quite visible ones - and no one should call them wrong.

 

Finally, shape and size: bear in mind that different shapes will have significantly different prices for the same carat weight, but the "cheaper" shapes will also tend to look smaller than the more expensive ones for the same weight. Going for a 1.50 princess cut will get you a stone that looks significantly smaller than a 1.40 round (even though the round may well be more expensive).

 

Rounds are typically the most expensive per carat (all else being equal), but are also among the larger looking and most balanced in appearance (bright, fiery and contrasted all at the same time); they are also the only ones for which a reasonably widespread cut grading system exists - for all the other shapes, you are relying on your sight and advice from the vendor.

 

Cut is the one factor where I think you should not compromise, or at least try not to; at the end of the day, in my opinion, it is what makes a stone nice (or look like a piece of glass). It is also the one thing that is most difficult to assess and the least well documented on lab reports - which is why choosing your jeweller may well be more important than choosing the diamond, particularly if you are keen on a non-round (so called "fancy") shape.

 

The jeweler we purchased the ring from said my ring can hold a larger stone & any cut, however we've moved and some of the local places have told me that I need to keep the size stone that is in there (or close to it) and that it "might" be possible to change shape.

Without a lot more detail on how your ring is made and what new stone you would like to set into it, there's not much that can be said. As to why you got very different responses, I can think of at least four reasons:

 

1. Any ring can be made to hold any shape and size of stone... provided you do enough work to it. Whether that comes at an acceptable price, with acceptable looks or even can still be defined as "the same ring" are different questions.

 

2. The original maker/seller may well feel more optimistic about the ability to fit something different into it: he made it, and may also be more positively disposed towards a returning client than someone that sees you for the first time and from whom you haven't (yet) purchased anything. It is of course also possible that the "oh yes, any size and any shape" was just sales talk, while the new jeweller(s) are more seriously considering the technical task.

 

3. "Larger" is a relative and quite undefined term; it is perfectly plausible that what the jeweller you bought from in the first place was thinking of something within 15-20% of the current stone size, and the others you have spoken to were assuming you'd want at least double... both are "larger".

 

4. People's skills and willingness to take on relatively difficult tasks vary.

 

I don't really know much so any suggestions would be appreciated, including websites to purchase loose stones, or vintage preowned rings. Also how to get the most for my money.

The Diamond Finder here is a pretty good place to start for loose stones - about 1 million at last count in all shapes, sizes, (D-Z) colours and clarities: http://www.diamondreview.com/diamonds - at the least, it provides you with a quick and easy way to get competitive prices on similar diamonds from reputable sellers.

 

There is a significant difference between vintage/period and estate/pre-owned... vintage may well come at a premium compared to "new" if it is representative of a particular style or even a signed piece; pre-owned may be more of a bargain hunter domain, but in both cases you will have to contend with more limited (or at least less well organised and described) choice and possibly with private sellers - with their pros and cons. Also, bear in mind that:

 

1. Pieces where there are significant stones (and any diamond above 1 carat IS significant) will be priced also based on the stone's retail value, and diamonds aren't perishable or wear quickly. The price of elaborate metalwork, side stones, pavé etc. may well be lower than "new", but the main stone(s) will be far less discounted.

 

2. The further back you go in time, the further away stones may be from current cut style and quality. For some - including me - this is a plus, because we like old cuts, but not everybody does. One plus is that older stones often come at a discount, but they also often look smaller and not as well polished, bright or symmetrical as new(er) ones of the same weight.

 

I think you need to get a more defined idea of what you are looking for before you start investigating possible sources - whether they are for new, pre-owned or period pieces.

 

Also how much should I look to have saved if I want to get a center stone thats around 1.2 - 1.5 carats?

It depends a lot on what shape, colour, clarity, cut quality you want... the cheapest stone in that range on the Diamond Finder is $1060: https://enchanteddiamonds.com/diamonds/view/P132-33HMM5?cid=diamondreview. The most expensive one is $54300: http://www.bluenile.com/atransfer.jsp?sourceid=50370&goto=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.bluenile.com%2Fround-diamond-1-carat-ideal-cut-d-color-fl-clarity_LD05149814. Of course they will look very different... not least because one is a 1.32 L/I3 pear, and the other is a 1.54 D/FL round.

 

What is the difference visually in the carat increments? I would like for the center stone to "look" bigger than the 1c is there, if I decide to keep the setting I have.

Again, since you haven't settled on a shape, there isn't much that can be said about "weight required to see a difference"; also, people's perception of size differences is subjective, and to some extent it depends on the shape itself, its proportions, cut quality and setting.

 

Many vendors have size charts - I don't find them particularly reliable, but at least they may give you an idea. Here's one to print from Blue Nile allowing a bit of comparison across shapes as well: http://pics.bluenile.com/assets/chrome/pdf/diamond_carat_size_0810.pdf. And here's one with more "intermediate" steps, but only works one shape at a time and is even less precise: http://www.ajediam.com/Sizes-of-Diamonds.html.

 

I'm sure that I'll have other questions as I learn more.

Ask away - this is a dialogue, not a statement of true and immutable facts... (well, some are, but some are not).

 

(Not requested advice, but since you are searching, next time you pop into a jewellery, ask the jeweller if while you look at new diamonds he can clean your ring... you may be pleasantly surprised with how large your current stone looks after a steam or ultrasound bath.)

Edited by davidelevi
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denverappraiser I have spoken once to the owner of a store (but he is definitely not the one who would be doing the work) he was the one that told me I'd have to stay within the same size (a little smaller or larger would be okay) another time in another store, I believe he was also the owner and the jeweler, since he was talking about where and what might get cut. He basically said "it depends on what stone I would choose if he could make it work" This is "almost" I believe it's the newer version my ring the prongs are slightly different. http://configuratorsnew.corbojewelers.com/configurator/var/apps/engagementring/?mode=settingfirst  (style number 64-S11425)

 

davidelevi thanks for sharing your nose/opinions with me. I tend to ask questions that are all over the board when I don't know much about a subject area as opposed to when I do they become more focused and concise.  I think what the decision will ultimately come down to (if I know myself) is what makes the most sense from a money perspective.  If I can find a new/pre-owned ring that I love and will cost the same or a better price than just replacing the center stone then I'll prob. go with that option. However if I have to spend more for a new piece since alot of the settings that I like seem to be more expensive then I'll look to just replace my center stone.  For some reason the figure 4-5k seems to make sense to me, hopefully I'll be able to save that much in the time I have and I still need to talk numbers with my better half. But I think that, that amount seems to make sense for what I want to do. Now I just need to pray there are no unexpected money emergencies that I would have to use the cash for :wacko:  If I do replace the center stone in my ring some of the other cuts that I have been looking at would be Cushion, Emerald, Asscher, Raident and Round.  However I find it is hard to envision what the ring would look like from just looking at photos. Plus it doesn't seem as popular to mix cuts so finding photos has proven difficult. However I've really only been looking on Google and Pinterest, maybe there are better places to look for inspiration.

I will definitely check out the links you suggested.  Here are a few more questions...

  • Are there any other sites/places to look for pre-owned, bargin pieces other than ebay, IdonowIdon't? I feel like I should avoid big box stores to avoid "paying for a name." (I have a coach diaper bag, but I got it at 1/2 day at a large children's consignment shop and only paid $20, I like name brands but only if I'm not pay retail for them, otherwise I find generic suits me just fine, I mean I guess that might be obvious if I've been wearing a CZ for 10 years)
  • Other than the GIA, AGS, or HRD cert, and return policy is there anything else I should make sure of when looking at possibly making a purchase online from either a business or an individual?
  • How do you find estate sales? I've tried goggling it but i'm not sure I'm searching for the right thing

I'm just happy I have a little over a year to figure this out since all the information and options out there can make my head spin.  Thanks again for all your help!

Edited by Gina
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Ok... with the link to the setting, something more definite can be said about ease of changing to another stone:

 

engagement_2921_8_400_Large.jpg

 

the construction means that changing shape is easy, and to some extent changing size too, as long as the new stone fits within the sides. The issue is that if you want something to look "significantly larger" than your current stone, almost by definition more work will be required than just swapping the head (i.e. the pyramid-shaped part that grips the stone), or you will have the centre hiding the two rounds at the side.

 

I think what the decision will ultimately come down to (if I know myself) is what makes the most sense from a money perspective.

Then a new, larger CZ is the best option quite honestly. It may not fit with other perfectly valid goals such as rewarding yourself for a 10 year wait, but from a money point of view it's unbeatable. And probably from a looks point of view too.

 

The link to Blue Nile links to the home page... so it's not much use for anyone to understand which style you liked.

 

If I can find a new/pre-owned ring that I love and will cost the same or a better price than just replacing the center stone then I'll prob. go with that option. However if I have to spend more for a new piece since alot of the settings that I like seem to be more expensive then I'll look to just replace my center stone.

With the budget you mention below and given what we now know about your current setting, I think you should focus on either a replacement centre or a pre-owned ring. A new ring with a larger stone and a setting as elaborate as your current one would probably break the bank or be of very doubtful quality, and a much simpler setting would basically mean buying the centre stone plus or minus a few hundreds.

 

For some reason the figure 4-5k seems to make sense to me

 

[snip]

 

If I do replace the center stone in my ring some of the other cuts that I have been looking at would be Cushion, Emerald, Asscher, Raident and Round.

If you are thinking of $4-5k for something that looks "significantly larger" than a 1 carat round, you will need to make some serious trade-off, but it's possible to work things out. However, you still need to narrow down the field a lot, starting from the shape.

 

To get an Asscher that looks like (say) a 1.20 round, you'd need something around 2 carats (and thus probably more than 5000 to get a nice looking one).

 

Emerald or radiant - perhaps more possible, if you are OK with a rectangular shape and can tolerate a visible yellow tint; bear in mind that you are used to seeing a totally colourless CZ, and going to an L to N colour may be a relative shock.

 

Cushions vary enormously in shape and size for a given weight, however they tend to look smaller than rounds unless you go for pretty unusual cut styles such as those by Henri Daussi. Not everybody's cup of tea - look them up.

 

Round - a good 1.20-1.30 can be had, as long as you (again) tolerate some colour and are ready to put in the time to look for a good one with relatively low clarity (SI2). The good news is that rounds are easier to shop AND will show less colour than other shapes, especially radiants.

 

Are there any other sites/places to look for pre-owned, bargin pieces other than ebay, IdonowIdon't?

Plenty, ranging from pawn shops (locally to you), to big internet sellers like Israel Rose (http://www.newyorkestatejewelry.com) or Lang Antiques (http://www.langantiques.com) to smaller internet dealers like Jewels by Erica & Grace (now closed, but if you go to http://www.jewelsbyericagrace.com you will find that Erica and Grace are now two solo dealers rather than a single company), Jeff Russak (http://www.lawrencejeffrey.com) or Park Place Jewelry ( http://www.parkplaceantiquejewelry.com). BTW, plenty more, but these 5 (or 6) I have dealt with in person, and can vouch for honesty and fairness, plus they probably have things that are more or less up your street.

 

In any case, start looking at styles and prices and narrow your focus - if you try to keep an eye out for anything you are very likely to find nothing. Looking for something is more likely to get you what you want: the problem with pre-owned is not the availability of goods, the problem is that they are not in any way gathered or sorted. Patience and persistence - or sheer luck - are the names of the game with pre-owned stuff. The best bargains are probably private sellers, but they are even less gathered and sorted, plus the risk factor is higher in many ways.

 

I feel like I should avoid big box stores to avoid "paying for a name."

That's almost certainly true for "new" purchases; far less for pre-owned, but in any case it makes your job only a little easier (few "big box names" to skip), unfortunately, and it makes it more difficult from other points of view.

 

Other than the GIA, AGS, or HRD cert, and return policy is there anything else I should make sure of when looking at possibly making a purchase online from either a business or an individual?

Reputation, reputation, reputation. Which is why it's much harder buying from an individual than from a business, and thus individuals need to either rely on proxies (brand name, good lab, friendship) or discount very heavily; sometimes both.

 

How do you find estate sales? I've tried goggling it but i'm not sure I'm searching for the right thing

It depends on what you mean by "estate sales". There are auction houses ranging from the big names (Christie's, Sotheby's, Bonham's) to much smaller places that run sales regularly; register with the house, and they will mail you when the next sale is coming up. This said, I wouldn't recommend it: the logistics are horrendous, you have very little recourse and it's easy to get stung if you are acting in a rush (which is almost always the case with auctions).

 

If you are thinking of individual estates/garage sales, then it's down to pot luck: seeing an ad or a board where they advertise locally, or get down to Craigslist and similar. Again, possibly the best bargains, but definitely the highest risk in many senses.

Edited by davidelevi
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So I think I am leaning towards replacing my center stone with a either a round or an emerald cut. While walking throughout he mall I learned that the Kay jewelers is holding a "diamond event" next month so I may check that out to see a bunch of diamonds to get a better feel for actual size and color/cut/clarity. Then I'll start looking for my stone at the best price.

How do I go about finding someone to appraise the ring after I have someone set it? Or will the person who sets it appraise it?

 

On another note, when I was on Pinterest I saw a post with a link to langantiques who is selling a reproduction of an Edwardian style piece for $58,000. The ring is stunning! & I absolutely love it but would need a 0 to come off the sale price to afford it. Do you think it would be worth my wild to see if I could find a local jeweler to make the setting and then purchase a stone to have set in it? Any thoughts on what realistically would something like that cost?

Here is the link for the ring. http://www.langantiques.com/products/item/10-1-4771

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Interesting... the price on my screen comes up as $52,250 - not that it makes a difference, but I wonder if they have adjusted it? Or were you adding sales tax to the price?

 

A lot of the price is the centre stone, and you can find similar (probably not outright identical) settings around at prices ranging from $2000 to $10000, depending on who makes it, using what techniques and materials, the level of detail and decoration, the amount and quality of secondary stones.

 

FWIW, from the photos I don't like what Lang made (I'm not talking of the design; I'm talking of finish - on a $50,000 ring I don't want to see rough casting on the gallery and the stone seat, out-of-shape shoulders and filing signs on the interior), though admittedly this could be the photographs. At any rate, this is not what I would call (or accept as) a "$10,000 setting".

 

Having someone copy (or be heavily inspired by) the setting is probably not going to hit the "$2000" level, unless you make serious trade-offs on the amount of details and/or the quality of the work; the question is where do you stop making those trade-offs. If you go with an off-the-shelf setting in white gold rather than platinum, you will definitely spend less, but you may have to come to compromises on the design and how well the whole ring matches the centre stone.

 

If your original goal of "centre stone looking significantly larger than a 1 carat round" is still there, I would not look at an elaborate setting with a budget of $5000 or thereabouts. Nor would I look at emerald cuts: they look lovely, but before you get to something that looks larger than a 1 ct round you need a lot of weight, and inclusions tend to be more visible in step cuts, so you require higher clarity than in a round.

Edited by davidelevi
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Completely missed your question on appraisal - sorry.

 

1. The appraisal is supposed to be independent - otherwise how are you going to get a neutral, unbiased view of the value of the item (and any issues with its quality)? Not a second opinion if it comes from the same source as the first, and vested interest is a powerful motivator...

 

2. If you totally trust the seller and you need the appraisal only to comply with your insurer's request, then a vendor provided appraisal is fine, but the sales of this type are few and far between.

 

How to find a good appraiser? Word of mouth... or start from these sites and see who you find:

 

http://www.ags.org

http://www.appraisers.org

http://www.najaappraisers.com

http://www.isa-appraisers.com

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And another thing. As I was trying to find something completely different, I came across this: http://antiqueengagementrings.com

 

I'm not specifically endorsing them - though their terms of sale seem good enough, I haven't checked stock or prices beyond a cursory look - but they may have some things that appeal to you.

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Thanks again Davidelevi, now I know you mentioned the certifications that I should stick with however I saw these 2 loose stones listed on IDNID and I was wondering what your thoughts were

 

1.51 round EGL cert. (this one is obviously more in my price range)

http://www.idonowidont.com/diamonds/151ct-round-loose-diamond-new-new-new-0  and

1.38 round GIA Cert.

http://www.idonowidont.com/diamonds/sparkling-gia-certified-138-ct-international-fine-trade-cut-diamond-happy-story-0

 

Also I ust realized that the picture/link I posted earler of my ring (when I said the prongs were different) might actually make a big difference in the rings ability to hold a bigger stone. So this is a pic of my rings prongs. (the side stone prongs do touch the center stone, which is why i'm not sure of this settings limitations.)

 

post-134842-0-64491400-1424292488_thumb.jpg

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Thoughts:

 

1. Check carefully the Terms and Conditions of sale on IDNID. They are unusually bad for buyers.

 

2. Of the two stones, assuming they are correctly described, I would have no hesitation: go for the GIA graded one. Apart from the appalling quality photos, at least you know colour, clarity and cut quality. With the EGL-I one, you know none of those, other than it's very unlikely to be (what GIA would call) an E/SI3.

 

Given the poor T&C for returns, you don't want to return any item, and it's far more likely that you'd return the EGL-I graded stone. Incidentally, despite being 10% lighter, the GIA-graded diamond actually faces up 0.15 mm larger... which shows that the EGL-I stone has been cut not all that well.

 

3. While the price for the GIA stone is competitive with retail offerings, you are paying a large premium for high colour and clarity which are not part of your stated goals. The EGL-I stone is a different question, because there is so much uncertainty on colour, clarity and cut quality that it is difficult to know whether you'd find it acceptable in the first place - in any case, while the GIA stone is priced well below the lowest online retail price, the EGL one is priced at the top of retail price range... at which point you may as well get something from a retailer with decent T&C, and probably significantly better cut.

 

To summarise: given what you said so far, I wouldn't pick either of these, but if you MUST pick one, then the GIA-graded stone is a far safer bet, particularly given the IDNID conditions of sale.

 

Re: setting: it's actually quite a different design from the one you posted about earlier, and while not impossible it would require a fair amount of work (read: $$$) to adapt it to a significantly larger or differently shaped stone. It can still be done, but I'm back to my previous position of "it depends on how much you want to spend, and what result you expect".

Edited by davidelevi
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  • 1 month later...

I went over to Kay yesterday for their diamond event and received a little more education. The manager of the store informed me that the side stones on my ring are around a 1/4 ct. They are between and H&I and also between SI1 & SI2. She showed me a few 1 ct and one 1.5 ct.

I obviously like the look of the 1.5 ct but that one was priced close the $13,000 (maybe 15,000).

When I came home I looked online and it seems like the best price I could find for a 1.5 ct. H/I SI1/2 category was for around a little over $7,000. However it just dawned on me that getting a 1.5 ct. That is SI1/2 might show to the naked eye more than it would in my side stones. Is this correct? Would you be able to see an inclusion(s) in a 1.5 w/o 10x magnification?

Also there was a large difference in visual size between the 1&1.5 ct. The 1 ct looked very similar in size to the .8 that is in my setting. Once I told them that the price of their 1.5 was out of my range The sales lady mentioned the 1ct would "look" larger once it was set in the ring. However I think I would like something larger than an 1ct and no bigger than a 1.5. Is there a better size to look that would make it look like a size increase for my center stone but would be in the 7k price range?

I know originally I was thinking 5k max but we may decide to save a little longer.

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When I came home I looked online and it seems like the best price I could find for a 1.5 ct. H/I SI1/2 category was for around a little over $7,000. However it just dawned on me that getting a 1.5 ct. That is SI1/2 might show to the naked eye more than it would in my side stones. Is this correct? Would you be able to see an inclusion(s) in a 1.5 w/o 10x magnification?

It's generally true that the larger the stone, the easier it is to locate SI-grade inclusions, however visibility depends on each individual stone. There are SI2 that look totally clean to the naked eye, and there are SI1 with obvious inclusions - the only way of knowing for sure is seeing the stone.

 

Also there was a large difference in visual size between the 1&1.5 ct. The 1 ct looked very similar in size to the .8 that is in my setting. Once I told them that the price of their 1.5 was out of my range The sales lady mentioned the 1ct would "look" larger once it was set in the ring.

The sales lady is probably correct; it depends a bit on the setting style, but gems do tend to look larger when set. However, I am now confused: you said you have a 1 carat (equivalent) CZ in your first post; or is it a 0.80?

 

However I think I would like something larger than an 1ct and no bigger than a 1.5. Is there a better size to look that would make it look like a size increase for my center stone but would be in the 7k price range?

I know originally I was thinking 5k max but we may decide to save a little longer.

Well, begin by staying below the 1.50 threshold, and you are rewarded by significantly lower price/carat; well cut stones also tend to look larger because they reflect more light. A nice, eye-clean round 1.30-1.40 J-SI1 or I-SI2 for $7k or thereabouts is definitely possible. Whether it looks "large enough" is a subjective question that only you can answer.
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As Davide says, there are options between the 1.00 and 1.50 mark.  At 1.50 there is a step up in price per carat.  I have put a little graphic together that shows an 0.8ct stone (6mm) next to a 1ct (6.5mm), a 1.3ct (7mm) and a 1.5ct (7.4mm).  As you can see, there is almost no difference when comparing to a 1 carat stone, but there is a sizable difference when you get to 1.3cts.  I find that there is not as big a difference when you go up to a 1.5.

post-109884-0-83195800-1427294810_thumb.jpg

 

I am also a little confused by what you currently have in your ring.  Is it a 0.8 or a 1ct CZ?

 

Edited to add: sorry that graphic came out so small.

Edited by GeorgeDI
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Thanks guys. I was originally under the impression that the center CZ was 1ct. (From what my husband has said in the past) But after meeting with one jewler I had asked him what size was in there he took out his measuring tool and said "it is was around a 6mm" I had no idea what that meant at that time but looked it up at home and was able to determine it is prob closer to a 0.8 ct.

Thanks for the graphic it really helps!

Just to recap & make sure I understand what you guys are saying.

I defiantly want to stay between the 1.3 & 1.5 ct. (To get the most for my money) And they only way to really know about the visibility of inclusions is to see the stone face to face which may make purchasing it online more difficult. Even though that seems to be the place where I'd get the best deal.

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It's a bit odd that they fitted a 6 mm CZ (rather than a 6.5 mm), given the cost difference is practically zero, but anyway, it makes the job of finding something larger a little easier! :)

 

Stay below the 1.50 threshold - because this is what is going to make the difference in money terms.

 

Inclusions and buying online - perhaps if you think of buying online as happening in two stages it may help:

 

1. You buy the right to see the stone for 15-60 days for the cost of return shipping (or even free - many vendors will offer free shipping both ways for at least a certain number of stones).

 

2. If you find a stone that you are happy with, you then buy it.

 

this allows you to see the stone - which is necessary to assess whether you can see the inclusions - but not commit until you are happy. BTW, bear in mind that setting the stone usually makes inclusions more difficult to spot, as well as making the stone look larger, but again it's difficult to say "how much" without having the completed object in hand.

Edited by davidelevi
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If the tool the jeweller used is a typical diamond gauge and he tried to measure quickly a stone in the setting, it is quite possible that the jeweller got the measurement wrong!

 

This is what a diamond gauge looks like:

 

35-560.jpg

 

Anyway - you seem to think that it looks smaller than a 1 carat diamond, but not by much, and that's what matters in a sense.

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